Partners: Cumbria County Council lighting team, Thorn Lighting UK (Zumtobel Group), Kendal Town Council, Cliff Terrace Residents and Friends of the Lake District.

Description and location: Light polluting footway luminaires along Cliff Terrace, Low Fellside in Kendal have been replaced with the Town’s first Dark Skies and Wildlife friendly heritage-style light fittings. The original Victorian cast iron lamp posts and lanterns were removed in the 1960-70s and subsequent repairs left a mis-match of fittings. The residents along the Terrace suffered from unwanted light shining into their houses and the extent of the light pollution cast much wider into the night sky. Members of the local Eddington Astronomical Society had raised concerns about the levels of light pollution from Kendal Castle public open space from where the Cliff Terrace lights were seen, both the lanterns themselves and their reflections from the house windows.

Cumbria County Council’s lighting team were able to assist residents in sourcing the new Heritage fittings which use modern energy efficient, LED technology to direct an asymmetrical light beam downwards along the length of path and with a warmer colour temperature of 2,200 Kelvin to protect wildlife and reduce glare. The new lanterns are mounted on restored, cast iron heritage lamp posts which were reintroduced into the local street scene to reclaim the original character of the Terrace situated in the Kendal Conservation Area. The new asymmetric lantern prevents wasted light projecting up the house front elevations and focuses the beam along the length of the path surface to improve user visibility.

Light product:  

Lamp post supplier: 

Feedback: Informal feedback from the residents shows they are thrilled with the improvements and wider benefits from the new lights. Antony Paddle, Cliff Terrace resident, said:

“Jack Ellerby approached us in January and asked if we would like some better lights for the Terrace as a test-bed for dark-sky-friendly street lighting. From the start, the residents were very enthusiastic to support the Dark Skies Cumbria Project and we helped along the way. Thanks to Jack, our Town and County Councillors and the County’s lighting team, we now have lights that are entirely appropriate for a lovely early Victorian terrace in a Conservation Area, fitted with modern low-energy LED arrays that put light only where we need it. Apart from the benefits to nocturnal animals, our view of the night sky and the climate, we no longer have bright light shining up into our windows at night. As a wildlife and astronomy enthusiast, I am delighted.”

Images (Anthony Paddle, Charlie Woodburn and FLD):   

Before – day and night on Cliff Terrace. Note the glare on to the houses and poorly light path surface.       

New Heritage-style lanterns, footway and Cliff Terrace houses (daytime)          

New lights at night focusing light down on to the path at Cliff Terrace (right, from upper floor window)

Wider points: Night time observations show that Moths are not attracted or ‘entrapped’ under the lights, and larger Bat species are feeding in close proximity, demonstrating the biodiversity gains from using the warmer colour 2,200 Kelvins LEDs.